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Ravens' Flacco concentrating on football

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Alex Marvez

Alex Marvez is a Senior NFL Writer for FOXSports.com. He has covered the NFL for the past 18 seasons as a beat writer and is the former president of the Pro Football Writers of America. He also is a frequent host on Sirius XM NFL Radio.

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Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco hopes to sign a lucrative contract extension just like teammate Haloti Ngata did on Tuesday.

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Flacco, though, doesn’t expect to ink such a deal in the near future.

“I’m not really expecting anything during the season,” Flacco said Tuesday night during an appearance with me and co-host David Diehl on Sirius XM NFL Radio. “I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

Flacco, 26, is under contract with the Ravens through the 2012 season. He expressed displeasure during the offseason at the lack of progress being made toward an extension. Flacco started more games in his first three NFL seasons (55) than any quarterback in league history while also reaching the playoffs in each of those years.

“I would feel that after three years, you can make a decision on whether you want me to be your future quarterback or you don’t. It’s your decision,” Flacco told the Baltimore Sun. “I wish and hope they would do what they want me to do, which is stay here. Obviously, I want to stay here no matter what. I would want them to do something as early as possible.”

Because of an NFL deadline for players given the franchise tag, the Ravens would have been unable to sign Ngata to an extension for the rest of the 2011 campaign if the deal wasn’t completed by Tuesday afternoon. The three-time All-Pro defensive tackle reportedly received a five-year, $61 million contract that includes a $40 million guaranteed payout over the next two seasons.

“He’s a dominant force in there,” Flacco said of Ngata. “To lock him up as long as we can is definitely a good thing for us.”

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As a 2008 first-round draft choice, Flacco signed a five-year, $11.9 million contract that included as much as $17.9 million in additional incentives, according to rotoworld.com. Flacco and Ravens running back Ray Rice, who is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in 2012, are now next in line for big-money contracts. By re-signing Ngata, Baltimore has a franchise tag available to use on Rice during the offseason if necessary.

The same tag ultimately could be applied to Flacco if a long-term contract can’t be completed. But such a scenario is the last thing on Flacco’s mind as the Ravens (1-1) prepare to play Sunday at St. Louis (0-2).

“I’m glad I’m playing football and not really worried about that,” he said. “There will be a time to worry. This is obviously not one of those times. You just go out, play football and try to get some wins.”

Flacco has completed 52.5 percent of his passes (32 of 61) for 421 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions in games against Pittsburgh and Tennessee.

Ngata was the 10th of 12 players given the franchise tag in 2011 to sign a contract extension. San Diego receiver Vincent Jackson and Miami defensive tackle Paul Soliai were the lone exceptions. Both now are set to become unrestricted free agents in the 2012 offseason unless designated as franchise players by their respective teams once again.

Tagged: Ravens, Haloti Ngata, Joe Flacco

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